Mitch Tonks’ Little Black Book of Seafood

Train operating company First Great Western has commissioned something a little more engaging than a press and poster campaign: a culinary guidebook by restauranteur and chef Mitch Tonks

Rather than producing a set of press or poster adverts to promote the various destinations in the South West of the UK reachable by First Great Western, the train operating company has commissioned something a little more engaging: a culinary guidebook by restauranteur and chef Mitch Tonks

“The book [entitled My Little Black Book of Seafood] was put together so people could pick it up on the train and work out how to go and eat some of the best seafood on the planet,” says Tonks (who owns seafood restaurants in Dartmouth and Bristol) of the project which he conceived together with First Great Western. The train company then approached The Leith Agency to develop the concept.

As well as designing and producing the book, Leith commissioned CIA illustrator Jill Calder to inject the project with no small amount of charm through a host of illustrations and hand drawn type which appear throughout the handy tome.

Calder also designed the hand-lettered cover:

My Little Black Book of Seafood by Mitch Tonks costs a mere £1.50 and is available from the Express Café onboard any First Great Western train. In a rather nice touch, all proceeds go to The Fisherman’s Mission, a charity which provides support and care to fishermen and their families.

You can also view the book digitally online here.

The April print issue of CR presents the work of three young animators and animation teams to watch. Plus, we go in search of illustrator John Hanna, test out the claims of a new app to have uncovered the secrets of viral ad success and see how visual communications can both help keep us safe and help us recover in hospital

Buy your copy here.

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  • sarah

    where can you buy it?

  • @sarah – Good question! You can buy it on any First Great Western train from the onboard Express Café. You can also view it online too. I’ve added the appropriate link and info to the post above

  • That’s a great little idea. Shame it’s about seafood! Can’t stand the stuff. I’d love to see that moved out into different areas. Maybe he could do little travel guides too? That’d be awesome.

  • sarah

    Only on those routes? As in not in Scotland perhaps?

  • Chris

    Where can you buy the book?

  • This is a fantastic idea, the polish is great, thumbs up to the illustrator, also nice to see the proceeds going to charity..

  • I run a marketing agency and have a national client that supplies fresh seafood from Cornwall to many of top restaurants in the UK – so this is very relevant…I’ll be sharing this little gem with him and will grab a copy on my next train down there!

  • Very cool and very creative. Love when unique ideas like this come to light and appreciate the ‘higher-ups’ who give the green light to a project like this. It’s great that they’re willing to take a chance!

  • Positive Feedback! Thanks so much for lovely comments. It was genuinely a brilliant job to work on. Both the creatives at The Leith and the client at FGW were very open to ideas and gave me a pretty free reign to do what I do. Just goes to show what can happen when the reins are slackened off a bit and client and creatives all trust one another! There’s a slightly animated version of the book on the FGW website too…or you can find it on my blog about the project

  • Beautifully designed little book and at £1.50 its a steal. Thumbs up to Leith and Jill.